Team in Joint Exercise with GMFRS White Watch, Bolton Central Fire Station

Following on from a previous RTC extrication exercise with GMFRS at Horwich Fire Station, joint with Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service (Chorley) on Saturday 30th November 2013 (See website ‘News’ report dated the same) a repeat RTC exercise was arranged this morning, the venue this time being GMFRS Bolton Central Fire Station.

Organised again by friend of Bolton MRT, GMFRS Watch Manager Craig Lunt, the exercise involved all the members of White Watch, Bolton Central Fire Station, where Craig Lunt has transferred from Horwich Fire Station to be the new Watch Manager at Bolton.

Originally scheduled to commence at 11.00hrs, the exercise was put back when the team was called out firstly to Incident 22 and then to Incident 23, with members from the team going straight from the operational incidents to the rescheduled exercise.

The following is an account of the exercise by team friend Dani Burgess of North East Wales Search and Rescue Team, who joined us today for this exercise;

Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service and Bolton MRT participated today in an impressive RTC simulation exercise with Bolton MRT taking the role as the on-scene casualty care and advising the fire Crew on the casualty’s condition and extrication.

Overall there was five Bolton MRT Call Out list members, 1 amazing NEWSAR member (Webmaster; Well Dani did write this!) and all the fire crew from White Watch taking part.

The incident consisted of a small hatch back car with 3 passengers; two were dramatically impaled on steels rods from different directions. The driver was impaled with a rod through the windscreen which went straight through her torso and out through the back of the car seat. The front seat passenger who was unresponsive was impaled with a rod through the car passenger door entering into the side of her. The third passenger was travelling in the back was complaining of neck and spinal pain.

The hatchback being only a two door model made access to the casualties harder for crew, entry was through the boot and driver door only, the passenger door was inaccessible due to the entry of the rod. After initial assessments of casualties made by Bolton MRT the decision was made to extricate the back seat passenger mainly because he was the easiest to remove and would free up room to work around the impaled two front seat passengers.

C Spine control was implemented by Bolton MRT as the Fire crew carefully set about removing the roof of the car using their specialised cutting tools. A long board was then slowly slid behind the his back, and the rear seat was then unbolted and lifted out, allowing the casualty to be slowly lowered and lifted onto the board at an angle, he was then lifted out through the open boot and removed successfully to safety.

The front seat passenger door was cut back to release the trapped rod and enable the team to work around the injured woman. The tricky position of the rod which entered her torso meant the casualty had to be slid onto the long board from the bottom of seat, and slowly turned onto the board. Once clear of the vehicle she was then placed onto fire crew blocks to ensure the angled rod in torso was clear of touching the ground.

Finally the last passenger was then able to be excavated after the fire crew had carefully cut away around the front entry of the rod. The windscreen was then removed to free the trapped female. The car seat was then unbolted from the floor and after securing her to the seat she was then carefully lifted up and through to the back of car with a hand over hand system by the fire crew with the rod still impaled through the casualty and the car seat. She was then cleared from the vehicle successfully.

The Bolton MRT and Dani from NEWSAR would like to thank Watch Manager Craig Lunt and the members of GMFRS White Watch, Bolton Central Fire Station, for their hospitality during this training exercise, and for their interest in the work of Bolton MRT.